2185 Policy – Use of Volunteers and Interns with Regularly Scheduled Student Contact

The Bellingham School District is committed to working in partnership with parents and the community to provide all students with the best education possible.  Since volunteers and interns can make a valuable, direct contribution to the schools, parents, and community members are urged to become involved and volunteer time to supplement building-based educational programs, provide clerical assistance, or assist District programs which support parental involvement.


Volunteer – an individual who donates time without expectation of any direct compensation (e.g., money or credit) and is willing to serve in any capacity which is responsive to the needs of a building or program.

Intern – an individual, usually from an educational program, who provides time to a District school or program in anticipation of receiving skill development and some compensation (e.g., credit).  Placement requires matching the intern’s needs with the needs of the District, program, or school.

Supervised – work with students is done within the general visual range of a District employee, or there are a minimum of two adults present at any time.

Unsupervised – work with students is not within the general visual range of a District employee or is done without another adult present.


In order to assure that all volunteers and interns are used in an appropriate and effective manner, compliance with all statutory requirements is maintained, and students are assured a safe environment, the following guidelines for the use of volunteers and interns are established:

  1. The principal or program supervisor shall be responsible for approving all volunteers and interns assigned to his or her building or program.
  1. The principal or program supervisor shall assure that all volunteer and intern assignments are appropriate and supportive of the building or program objectives.
  1. If at any time the principal or program supervisor believes that the services provided by a volunteer or intern are no longer needed or of benefit to the District, the principal or program supervisor shall consult with the volunteer or intern and determine an appropriate course of action.
  1. At no time may a volunteer or intern be allowed access to student records or any other information considered by the District to be confidential.
  1. All volunteers and interns must complete a state required disclosure form.
  1. Any volunteer or intern who has regularly scheduled, unsupervised access to children under the age of 16 or access to any developmentally disabled persons regardless of age, must undergo a State Patrol background check, including fingerprinting, prior to beginning work in the District.

The Board supports collaboration with appropriate community agencies in the recruitment and training of volunteers and interns for the schools, and authorizes the Superintendent to determine procedures for identifying, training, and placing volunteers and interns.

Adopted: 03/25/99
Revised: 03/25/99